Asian-Americans are a bit of a voting paradox. They’re the fastest growing minority group in the country, but they’re also the least likely to vote.
Take the 2012 election — Asian-Americans voted Democrat in higher numbers than ever before (73 percent cast a ballot for Barack Obama). But they had the lowest voter turnout of any racial group (47 percent).
To try and narrow that discrepancy, a group of Asian-Americans have created the AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islander) Victory Fund.
“This fund is dedicated to really, at this point, one singular objective — and that is: How do we mobilize the Asian-American Pacific Islander community?” said Shekar Narasimhan, chairman of the AAPI Victory Fund and a Democratic political operative.
He says he’s also focused on electing a president who shares the community’s values.
The founders have deep ties to the Democratic party, and the fund is left-leaning. They say they’ll support a specific candidate after the nominating conventions, but their current focus is energizing Asians to vote.
The Asian-American electorate is small — in 2012, Asians made up just 3 percent of the electorate — but they have sizable populations in key battleground states.
The AAPI Victory Fund is not focused on traditional superPAC activities like TV ad buys, but instead, it’s laser-focused on a simple data-driven task: increase voter registration in six states where the Asian population is potentially larger than the margin of victory — Ohio, Virginia, Nevada, North Carolina, Colorado and Florida.